Saiful Bahri I, Lhokseumawe – Female religious pupils (santriwati) from the An Islamic boarding school (pesantren) in Lhokseumawe, northern Aceh, are now required to wear the cadar (full length Islamic veil) in and around their new pesantren.
As reported earlier, the head of the An Pesantren in Lhokseumawe city and a teacher (both men) are currently being detained by the Lhokseumawe Municipal Police headquarters (mapolres).
The pair are being held for allegedly sexually assaulting a number of male religious pupils (santri) aged between 13-14 years.
As a result of the case, the Lhokseumawe municipal government (Pemko) froze the An Pesantren and opened a complaints coordination post for the student’s parents and guardians to assist in continuing their children’s education.
However after discussions with various parties, the temporary freeze on the An Pesantren was lifted around one week ago. Education activities have been resumed and the management of the foundation replaced.
Meanwhile the school was moved from its earlier location in the Muara Dua sub-district to the Al Muhajirin Pesantren in the Buket Rata area of Meunasah Masjid Punteut Village in Blang Mangat sub-district, Lhokseumawe.
The new An Pesantren head, Tgk Sulaiman Daud, said that studies would begin on Monday July 29. As many as 137 student have already reregistered and most have returned as of Saturday July 27.
The students originate from East Aceh, Bireuen, Sigli, Central Aceh, Bener Meriah, North Aceh and Lhokseumawe.
According to Tgk Sulaiman, on Saturday the foundation held a meeting with the student’s parents to discuss various issues related to their continued education at the An Pesantren.
One of the issues that was conveyed during the meeting was that 50 out of 137 santriwati have already reregistered and they will now be obliged to wear a cadar in an around the boarding school grounds.
“Before women santri were indeed also required to wear a cadar, but only during Koran recitations. But now they are required to wear a cadar when they are in and around the vicinity of the pesantren”, he said.
The aim of enforcing this regulation, said Tgk Sulaiman, was so that female students fully cover their aurat (parts of woman’s body should not be seen in public).
[Translated by James Balowski. The original title of the article was “Setelah Kasus Pelecehan, Santriwati Wajib Bercadar di Lingkungan Pesantren An Lhokseumawe”.]